One of the cooler aspects of this whole ‘net thing from a film lover’s point of view is that it’s created a whole new venue — if not quite a market — for short films. While it’s still next to impossible to make any money from short subjects, Carl Erik Rinsch, a commercial director who is currently making the leap to features, has apparently used an Internet short to get one of his projects off the ground. It probably helps that he’s got the apparent backing of one of the most respected names in mainstream film-making.

“The Gift” is part of a series of connected shorts called “Parallel Lines” backed by Ridley Scott Associates. The story is as simple as it gets, but the visuals are anything but. Anyhow, according to Peter Sciretta at /Film, it all turns out to be prequel, or I imagine a possible pre-credit or opening sequence, to a new feature over which Rinsch has been able to get an apparent studio bidding war going. It’s embedded below, but I suggest you punch the full-size feature and make sure the subtitles are turned on first for reasons which I think will be fairly obvious.

[UPDATE: Crimeny! I put up the wrong video and no one said anything. Does anybody actually read this? Anyhow…at long last, the corrected one is below.]

Last year, I praised Rinsch’s strong visual sense and sensibility in a post which included embeds of some of his terrific commercial work. While I’m not sure he’s a great storyteller yet, he’s certainly on to something. If you liked the above, I’d suggest you take a look.